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Study finds UK to have adequate CO2 storage capacity up to 2050

EBR Staff Writer Published 16 June 2017

A recent study shows that the UK has adequate potential storage sites for CO2 to meet its requirements up to 2050.

The study conducted by the Energy Technologies Institute (ETI) revealed that a significant number of such sites have been already either fully or partially appraised.

Titled “Taking stock of UK CO2”, the study has found out that there are large-scale storage sites in the UK that use shared infrastructure and already available low-risk technologies that are capable of giving the lowest cost direction for the development of carbon capture and storage (CCS).

The study showcases all that has been learnt since the UK government’s cancellation of its two CCS demonstration projects in 2015 end.

ETI Strategy Manager Dennis Gammer said: “Any attractive CCS projects to developers and the government will need to realise economies of scale at, or relatively shortly after start-up, and because of this are most likely to be large gas power stations delivering strategic infrastructure to enable the later tie-in of industrial emissions.

“For some potential matches of emitter and store options to start small and build quickly may reduce the size of any initial commitment at risk and this offers an additional approach to building a CCS network.

ETI reports that there is virtually no technical challenge that could limit the CCS industry from developing at scale in the country from several strategic shoreline hubs. This, the institute says is based on the appraisal work conducted till date that covers a wide range of the types of stores that are presently available.

The east coast of England owing to its large emissions base has been identified as the main location for developing CCS. Also, the region as per ETI has good sites for large-scale new low carbon power stations and industry besides being close to huge, low-cost offshore storage sites.

The institute opines that after shared infrastructure is developed, decarbonisation of industry by CCS can be launched at an attractive cost while hydrogen and negative emissions generation can also be developed.